Welcome to Goleta

Nicknamed “the Good Land,” this comely coastal plain 10 miles west of Santa Barbara is home to a flourishing tech industry, premier golf and surf hotspots, and the innovative University of California in Santa Barbara—as well as all the pleasant beaches, farm-fresh food, and regional wineries the Gold Coast is known for. Once considered the sleepier, small-town sister to Santa Barbara, the city is fast becoming a destination in its own right due to a crop of new craft breweries, the opening of several stylish hotels and resorts, its popular annual festivals, and a growing awareness of the area’s natural beauty and charms.

Key Details


suburban, shopping, professional, shopping, quiet, beach access, students, great schools, restaurants


Commute Times
Downtown Santa Barbara 13m by car
Hope Ranch 11m by car
The Mesa 14m by car
East to West South Patterson Ave. to Cathedral Oaks Rd.
North to South Cathedral Oaks Rd to El Colegio Rd
Nearby Neighborhoods Hope Ranch, The Mesa, Downtown Santa Barbara

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A slice of quintessential suburbia steadily carving out its own character.

Once a prominent lemon-growing region during the late 19th and early 20th centuries and largely agricultural, the city experienced a boom post-World War II as aeronautical, defense, and other technology-focused firms set up shop in town. Today, the city offers storybook suburban living—think wide sidewalks, tree-lined streets, and generous yards—paired with a smattering of new destinations and businesses rapidly giving it a fresh spirit all its own.

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What to expect:
Suburban living paired with a budding scene of hip new spots to eat, drink, play, and stay.

It’s a good life in the Good Land. Yes, all the familiar markers of clean-scrubbed suburbia are visible in Goleta, but a new dose of hipster cred has recently hit the town. Trendy destinations like the retro Klimpton Goodlands hotel, craft brewers M.Special and Hollister, seasonal food celebrants like the Goodland Kitchen & Market, and the newest location of Santa Barbara-based The French Press are ushering in a new wave of cool to the city. Consider Goleta suburbia sans boredom.

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The lifestyle:
A beachy, laid-back small-town scene.

It’s an open secret that Santa Barbara residents regularly daytrip out to Goleta to enjoy the area’s less-crowded beaches, numerous bike trails, and diversity of shopping options. Old Town Goleta boasts the area’s best vintage and thrift stores and specialty Asian markets, and larger retailers like Costco, Home Depot, and Bed, Bath & Beyond anchor the city’s major shopping centers. Conversely, Goleta residents have a bigger city at their fingertips: a 15-minute drive delivers you to the restaurants, watering holes, boutiques, and all-day-long action of State Street in downtown Santa Barbara.

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Unexpected appeal:
Recreational activities abound, but a few particularly desirable spots will thrill surfers and golfers.

Goleta-based swell-seekers hit up the acclaimed waves of the Campus Point surf break, while 9-iron masters choose between the seaside Sandpiper golf course, rated by Golf Digest as one of the top 25 public golf courses in the nation, or the rolling greens of the Glen Annie golf course set amid the foothills of the Santa Ynez mountains. The neighborhood is also ribboned with bike trails, plentiful parks, and hiking trails.

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The market:
An abundance of new construction properties and ‘50s-era tract homes.

The historic hilltop Knoll subdivision, the 26-acre Tree Farm development, the Hollister Village luxury apartment complex—these are just a few of many housing developments recently greenlit in Goleta. Real estate prices aren’t exactly low (the average home goes for under $1 million, but not by much), but compared to Santa Barbara, Goleta buyers enjoy larger lots and bigger homes for the price.

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You'll fall in love with:
Convenient transit hubs that make commuting—and getaways—a breeze.

Proximity to the Santa Barbara airport puts major cities like Los Angeles, San Francisco, Seattle, Portland, Denver, Phoenix and Dallas right at Goleta residents’ fingertips, and the Amtrak train offers a lift to any coastal California city between San Luis Obispo and San Diego.

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Other Neighborhoods in Santa Barbara, Montecito, & Central Coast to Explore